Store Closure Has Me Feeling Beyond Sad
The news was a real gut-punch. I’m sure you felt the same. We will always remember exactly where we were and what we were doing when we learned…Bed, Bath & Beyond was going out of business.
My first thought was admittedly selfish. I should’ve felt empathy for all the blue-aproned employees who suddenly found themselves without a job. But no. My first thought was: “WHAT AM I GOING TO DO WITH ALL THESE @#$%!% COUPONS?!?” I’ve babied them, cutting them neatly from the front page of the flyer that arrived in my mailbox approximately eleventy times a month. I even bought them their own zippered pouch so they could live inside the driver’s side door of my mid-sized SUV. (Which may be the most Virgo-American sentence ever written come to think of it.)
I had a ton of 20 percent offs, a few precious $15 offs, and more than a few $5 offs. Hmmmm. I’m starting to see why BB&B went belly up. I mean, talk about giving away the store! Of course, now they’re all as worthless as a shirtless Mark Zuckerberg NFT. Well. Almost.
Amateur shoppers foolishly tossed their coupons after the expiration date, but I never had any trouble using an expired coupon. So, yeah, maybe I was part of the problem.
Sometimes, I’d make like Mrs. Claus and share coupons from “the pouch” with clueless customers in line.
“Are you seriously going to pay full price for that anti-fatigue gel kitchen mat?” I heard myself hiss to the woman in front of me.
“Here. Use this,” I shoved a crumpled 20 percent off coupon at her. Like a crazy person. She used it and didn’t even turn around to say thanks. So now I’m comin’ for her family.
I loved that big boxy store with towels and comforters stacked literally to the ceiling and smelling like a fragrant mix of sneaker balls and floor wax. BB&B had solutions for problems I didn’t even know I had! Sturdy clear acrylic bins just to hold eggs, which seemed safer in their carton but what do I know? Liners for your sink, your dresser drawers, your cookie sheets, your litter box, your other liners! So many liners!
The clearance corner was my favorite. It always had an Island of Misfit Yogurt Makers vibe to it, super messy and picked over but if you were willing to plunder a bit you might find something fabulous at a crazy discount. I’m remembering the $5.50 Ugg storage bins of 2018. Still use ‘em. Still love ‘em.
When I read the personal letter in my inbox from the head of the company announcing the closing and thanking me for my loyalty, I felt a wave of nostalgia. Where else could you buy, in one stop, an All Clad waffle iron, incense, Brookstone towel warmer, Scrub Daddy AND root beer flavored Twizzlers?
Bed, Bath & Beyond’s closing reminded me of four years of restocking assorted dorm rooms and apartments for the Princess. The store closest to UNC-Chapel Hill was astonishing in its prep for thousands of teary parents and their eye-rolling freshmen. It was the first and last time I ever got emotional over buying a shower curtain. I’ll never forget the seasoned employee nodding knowingly as I blubbered “b-b-b-but it’s her first box of HANGERS!”
BB&B was my go-to for all those weirdly useful warming gadgets for my dear mother-in-law every Christmas. Who knew there were so many ways to soothe arthritic shoulders and achy feet? She loved them all.
Truly the only thing I won’t miss about BB&B was catching my image in the terrifying display of 30x magnifying mirrors. Oh. My. Sweet. Lord. What is that thing on my eyelid and is it going to kill me?
Farewell, old friend. I’m 100 percent sure I’ll miss you.